Discover more from The Low Country
Demystifying the Central Bank Digital Currency
Supposedly the cornerstone of a Great Reset, the CBDC not exactly taking the world by storm. We should remain vigilant and skeptical in equal measure.
The Central Bank Digital Currency is like the mythical unicorn. Many of us have heard of it — but who has actually seen one? Well, it turns out lots of Nigerians have, and they have come away unimpressed. In a recent post by Nick Corbishley at the economics and finance blog Naked Capitalism we read:
The First Ever Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) of a Largish Economy, Nigeria’s eNaira, Is Already Floundering
After being launched to great fanfare in October 2021, Nigeria’s eNaira has so far had minimal impact on the country’s economy and citizens. Only about 700,000 people have downloaded an eNaira wallet — a thoroughly underwhelming number in a country with an estimated population of 225 million people. eNaira transactions have also failed to pick up despite the fact that every merchant must accept payments in the digital currently.
Many central banks around the world apparently have CBDC projects underway. While the idea is not so new, we began to hear a lot about CBDCs during the course of 2021. There was speculation among pandemic critics and skeptics that the crisis was being opportunistically exploited by authorities pursuing unsettling agendas. The lockdowns were to condition the public to loss of freedom, while the push by many governments to implement vaccine passports was the first step towards a full-blown digital ID, which in turn would lead to the imposition of a CBDC that would give our elites exceptional control over our lives, especially when combined with a social credit system, supposedly modeled on a Chinese system, about which I’ve written previously.
On his Substack, Charles Eisenstein wrote a helpful overview of the pros and cons of CBDCs earlier this year, if you are wondering what the big deal is:
Driving the deployment or, if you prefer, the imposition of a CBDC would be the awareness among our overlords that the financial system of the collective West is in dire straights. The contradictions that were exposed during the 2007/2008 financial crisis were never resolved, the debt bubble has continued to expand at dizzying pace. The European banking system, in particular, is apparently deep under water. Their version of a “Great Reset” would entail a kind of controlled demolition of the economy, whereby the massive debt overhang is wiped off the books and the financial elite would end up controlling what few tangible assets are not yet in their hands. If we were playing Monopoly, they would end up owning all the hotels, even on lowly Baltic Ave. Perhaps this sounds like pure fantasy, but actually the banksters tried it before:
In the worst-case scenario, the CBDC portends a truly dystopian future. None of us want to live in this kind of society, right? Thing is, how close are we actually to seeing a CBDC — benign or not — in our daily lives?
In various podcasts, Alex Krainer, a very fine geopolitics and finance analyst, has said that by its own admission the European Central Bank only began designing a CBDC in 2019 and likewise by its own admission many years behind the private crypto space in the development trajectory. Krainer, who has experience in integrated systems development, points out that a totalitarian control system based on a CBDC would require exceptionally skilled software engineers to both build and maintain. It is by no means a given that people could be found that would be prepared to implement such a dystopian system and keep it running. In other words, a CBDC is not a turnkey system that can be deployed at a whim.
In Nick Corbishley’s piece on the Nigeria CBDC, we further read
Apparently one of the reasons for this is that Nigerian lenders are impeding the adoption and use of the CBDC due to their own concerns about losing revenue from their traditional banking services. At least that is what CBN’s Governor Godwin Emefiele says. “There is apathy,” at the banks and fintech firms because of the lack of revenue generating opportunities.
This highlights another issue: are all the major players onboard? Thanks to such features as direct peer-to-peer payments, the CBDC cuts out the middleman, as it were, in this case commercial banks, as Corbishley further details in his piece. What’s in it for them? Wall Street watchers Pam Mertens and Russ Mertens wrote about this resistance earlier this year: Credit Unions and Banking Groups Warn of “Devastating Consequences” of a US Central Bank Digital Currency.
To be sure, it is a healthy thing to speculate about what our governments and our shadowy elites are up to; official narratives deserve to be questioned. Our state-backed, corporate media cannot be trusted. We are blessed in the burgeoning alternative media circuit, such as here on Substack, with independently-minded people doing exceptional work in digging through publicly available information, putting together the pieces, mapping out networks of power and influence.
At times, however, these scenarios are presented as fait accompli. Though this may not be intentional, it can seem that way if countervailing social, political, and technological realities are not taken into consideration. Resetting the economy to a CBDC won’t happen overnight; like in Nigeria, the new technology will have to be tested first, deployed alongside existing systems, and not everyone may immediately jump onboard. Likewise, earlier this summer, the French parliament rejected the Macron government’s vaccination passport scheme, throwing a spanner in the works for those who want to move us to universal digital IDs. Are these temporary or permanent setbacks? We’ll see.
When our earthly masters show their cards, such as through the World Economic Forum, aka “Davos”, they try to project far more power than they actually have, as malignant and pervasive as their influence may be. We shouldn’t underestimate them. But neither should we overestimate them.